In the history of the Central African Republic, there is a "first" and "after" Pope Francis’ visit. The country ended up under the spotlight of the world media in November 2015 thanks to the Holy Father’s visit and the opening of the first Holy Door and Jubilee of Mercy in Bangui, its capital, thus becoming the "spiritual capital of the world".
Pope Francis’ visit came on the eve of the constitutional referendum and presidential elections that were held in December and that should have marked a turning point towards the stabilization of the Country. The "Francis effect" was felt above all in the capital of Bangui, but it is true that many parts of the country remains in the hands of the "Seleka" armed groups where massacres, violence and abuses of all kinds are carried out. How was this dramatic situation born and why did it develop? A historical reconstruction helps to understand it. (...)